L es flames were on Thursday morning on the roadside near Montalba-le-Château, about thirty kilometers from Perpignan. 1100 hectares of scrubland went up in smoke, according to a latest report. Firefighters managed to set fire Friday morning and if the fire is not extinguished, the situation is controlled by France Bleu Roussillon.
In the evening, firefighters took advantage of better conditions to contain the flames: the wind was less strong and the temperature dropped. Around 23h, several roads closed to traffic, could reopen. Traffic train between Perpignan and Villefranche-de-Conflent, totally interrupted Thursday, has not yet returned to normal this morning.
350 firefighters are always on hand to monitor the fire, the more important year in the Pyrenees Orientales. Three firefighters were slightly injured. They were up to 600 mobilized around midnight, came the Tarn-et-Garonne, Haute-Garonne, Gers, Aude and Catalonia (Spain), supported by ten Canadair and a hundred vehicles.
This Friday morning, two Canadair water bomber and a helicopter should fly again to turn off the last active foci. Vigilance is all the more important as the north wind could resume this morning.
evacuations and shelters
The flames were dangerously approached a small village, 60 residents had to be evacuated. They had been “welcomed in the commune village hall,” further away from the fire, while another hundred were “homebound” said the prefecture. accommodation centers set up to serve as refuges for people blocked, welcomed 400 castaways of the road.
In addition to the burning of Montalba, the county fire and rescue service (SDIS) recorded thirty fire starts throughout the day Thursday in the Pyrenees Orientales. Eight of them had required the intervention of air resources mobilized at the site of Montalba
The flames ravaging the sector Montalba -. Tarerach had almost been mastered at midday but resumed in force “due to the relocation of resources and the recovery of the wind,” explained early evening the Pyrénées Orientales prefect. The task of firefighters was particularly complicated by a north wind blowing at 70 km / h.
The criminal path is not excluded
All of these fire starts were of human origin, involuntary in most cases. Because butts thrown through the window of a car or smoldering barbecues, for example.
But the criminal track is not ruled out. By intervening in a fire starting in Boule d’Amont, around 17h, firefighters noticed a white van with a man acting suspiciously at the wheel. An investigation to determine if there is a connection with the fire. “There are strong presumptions”, said the prefect
Already in 2005, 2 000 hectares had burned in five days, just outside Rodes
& gt;.. & Gt ; Relive the events of the day Thursday